Sign up with your email address to be the first to know about new products, VIP offers, blog features & more.


At Punta Della Dogana, a cellist

seated under the arcade, is playing

melodies from operatic arias.

It is early evening. A fog horn sounds.

A cruise ship is sailing for Dubrovnik.

With a tug at the bows to pull, one to steer

at the stern, The Queen Elizabeth –

its superstructure higher than St Mark’s

Campanile, moves slowly toward us

through the Giudecca canal. Passengers,

silhouettes on the top deck, look down

on the packed, diverse crowds jostling along

the Riva Degli Schiavoni,

the embankment near the Doge’s palace,

where the traders from Dalmatia docked.

I think of the theatre – true to its name

refurbished from its rococo ashes –

the five tiers of boxes, the gold leaf,

the papier maché, the trompe d’oeil

in a city of commerce and sea water.

The ship is tugged past us. The cellist plays ‘La

donna è mobile’.



Note: The poem was first published on Facebook in 2016.

© Copyright David Selzer

No Comments Yet.

What do you think?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *